Often accused of being over-indulgent and over complex progressive rock has not always had the easiest of rides since the punks almost beat it into submission in the late 70's, however , in the late 80's/early 90's, with the emergence of bands like Porcupine Tree and Dream Theater prog rock/metal started to see somewhat of a revival. That revival has rolled merrily on unabated but unlike its previous 70's incarnation which brought rock together with aspects of highbrow classical music the prog of the 90's, and up until the present day, has been a many headed beast utilizing elements from everything from jazz through to black metal.
Today we are reviewing an album from a Greek band who approach their prog from a more stoner/desert/hard rock angle, the band are called Wormhog and the album goes by the name "Yellow Sea"
Coming from a country that has given us such great stoner/hard rock bands as Nightstalker, Planet of Zeus, 1000 Mods and Dope Default it is not surprising that Wormhog's take on prog is delivered with its fair share of fuzz drenched crunch and thrumming distortion. Desert Psychlist is not sure if "stoner prog" is a thing but if it isn't then it should be and if it is then Wormhog should be considered its flagbearers, the band bringing complexities and intricacies to the table that have all the hallmarks of "classic" prog but cleverly infusing those elements with enough grunt and growl to fill a small zoo. Songs like "Beneath The Yellow Sea", "Inertia", "One Man" and "Planet Egg" are multi-layered tomes that are constantly shifting and evolving, the band always finding new directions and dimensions in which to take their songs into. Instrumentally and vocally these guys are right on the top of their game, the albums soaring vocals are blessed with impressive clarity and power and sit atop scorching well thought out guitar solo's, convoluted chord progressions, jazzy percussion and booming intricate bass lines as well as a very pleasing element of old school heavy metal growl.
Prog is often associated with weighty subject matter and overbearing unfathomable concepts but this is not so much the case with Wormhog's "Yellow Sea" yes there is a loose theme tying all these songs together but overbearing and unfathomable are not words you would place in a sentence with this excellent and highly enjoyable album.
Check it out .....
© 2020 Frazer Jones